Embrace the Thanksgiving spirit in San Diego and kick off the holiday season with multiple Thanksgiving feasts, the Rady Children’s Invitational basketball tournament, fun holiday happenings and more top things to do listed below.
When: Now – Dec. 31, 2023
Embark on a magical holiday adventure at Belmont Park’s Winter Wonder — a beachside wonderland that promises festive fun for all! Immerse yourself in the spirit of the season with classic rides, family-friendly entertainment and delectable holiday treats. Don’t miss the enchanting Christmas-themed cocktail pop-up, Miracle at Draft, featuring exclusive drinks, dazzling decorations and collectible mugs — it’s the perfect way to bring the holiday season to life.
When: Nov. 23, 2023
Celebrate the joyous spirit of Thanksgiving in San Diego, where the holiday season kicks off with a delightful array of traditional feasts and lively turkey trots. Immerse yourself in the beauty of this festive time and join locals and visitors alike as you spend memorable days in this captivating destination brimming with joy and warmth.
When: Nov. 23 – 24, 2023
Experience the thrill of college basketball at the inaugural Rady Children’s Invitational at LionTree Arena on the scenic UC San Diego campus. With a powerhouse lineup of the Iowa Hawkeyes, USC Trojans, Seton Hall Pirates and Oklahoma Sooners, this tournament guarantees high-stakes matchups and electrifying play. Don’t miss the chance to witness action-packed, intense basketball paired with the sun-soaked beaches and vibrant atmosphere that only San Diego can offer.
When: Nov. 24 – Dec. 31, 2023
Embark on a wild adventure this holiday season at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Witness the Safari Park transform into a dazzling wonderland as it comes alive with festive lights and holiday magic. Set against the backdrop of seasonal tunes and tempting treats, this extraordinary experience awaits you on select nights — don’t miss the chance to see the Safari Park in a whole new light!
When: Nov. 24 – 26, 2023
Sip your way through a delicious array of ciders at the 3rd Annual Ciderfest, hosted at Bottlecraft LPM! Indulge in a cider-tap takeover featuring artisan producers and seasonal varieties from such renowned cideries as Humboldt Cider Company, Far West Cider Co. and more. Don’t miss the excitement of Small Business Saturday, with the Market After Dark keeping the nighttime festivities alive, including an Apple Scavenger Hunt. Join the celebration of seasonal flavors with enticing fall specials from vendors all weekend long.
When: Nov. 25, 2023
Dive into the festive spirit of Southern California with Surfin’ Santa at Seaport Village. Experience the joy of seeing Santa make a grand entrance, arriving on San Diego Bay by watercraft and leading a lively parade to the fountain courtyard. Don’t miss the chance for a memorable photo with Surfin’ Santa on his giant surfboard, riding a 6-foot “wave,” and then follow him along the boardwalk to witness the enchanting first snowfall of the season at Malibu Farm. It’s an unforgettable holiday celebration for the whole family!
When: Dec. 1 – 30, 2023
Celebrate the holidays San Diego-style with Old Town Trolley’s Holiday Sights & Festive Nights Tour. Ride through such iconic locations as Old Town, the Embarcadero and Seaport Village. Join the sing-along caroling led by cheerful elf conductors, who share captivating holiday facts, trivia and traditions. Don’t miss the 15-minute stop at Seaport Village for extra holiday merriment.
When: Dec. 1 – 2, 2023
Experience the magic of the holiday season at December Nights, the City of San Diego’s largest free festival, held in stunning Balboa Park. Join the family-friendly celebration of enchanting lights, festive sounds, captivating attractions and delectable food. Don’t miss this opportunity to come together and embrace the holiday spirit in the heart of one of San Diego’s most beautiful and iconic locations.
When: Dec. 2, 2023
Experience the festive magic of Ocean Beach at the 44th Annual OB Holiday Parade, a cherished tradition for over 40 years! Join the lively crowd lining Newport Avenue as the quaint surfing community transforms into a vibrant spectacle of holiday cheer. Immerse yourself in the excitement as “OBceans” and eager visitors come together to kick off the holiday season at sunset.